United States Institute of Peace (USIP)

"USIP is the independent, nonpartisan conflict management center created by Congress to prevent and mitigate international conflict without resorting to violence. USIP works to save lives, increase the government's ability to deal with conflicts before they escalate, reduce government costs, and enhance our national security."

Source: USIP Website

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Senior Project Officer, Security Sector Educational Design & Curriculum Reform- Tunisia

Location: Tunis, Tunisia
Period: 01/04/2018 to 01/04/2019
Application Contact: (MENArecruitment@usip.org)
Application Deadline: 26/03/2018 11:55 pm


If you have a passion for making the world a better place and want to have a front row seat to the world stage, USIP is the place for you.

We are a nonpartisan institute chartered by Congress to tackle the world’s toughest problems.  Working in conflict zones around the world, our staff advise and support the military, government officials and community leaders – to promote knowledge and practices that prevent, mitigate and resolve violent conflict.  To learn more about USIP programs and job openings go to https.org/about/careers.  The Institute is Headquartered in Washington DC with staff working in 22 different countries, at any given time up to 20% of the staff could be deployed working in the field.


The Senior Project Officer (SPO) will support USIP on its Security Sector Training Reform project in Tunisia which will involve partnership and close coordination with Tunisian law enforcement training institutions to enact sustainable training reforms through pedagogical and managerial capacity building over the course of twelve months.

This project is in partnership with the USIP Academy (particularly its Curriculum and Training Design team based in Washington D.C.). The SPO will work closely with its members to ensure that USIP’s training experience and approach are incorporated throughout the project. The SPO will work out of Tunis and will report to the Project Lead and North Africa Regional Project Manager at the Tunis Hub.

The SPO will have proven subject matter expertise in pedagogy with experience in designing and delivering training to members of the public security sector. The SPO will help design training content aimed at enhancing Tunisia’s security sector training institutions and improving the quality and impact of their basic and in-service training.

The SPO will support the Project Lead in selecting and contracting Subject Matter Experts (SMEs) in other specialties, such as communication and monitoring and evaluation, and will coordinate the SMEs’ trainings, ensuring consistency and quality assurance throughout the different project activities. The SPO will design and deliver certain trainings, in coordination with the USIP Academy Training and Curriculum Design team, and will also monitor produced training content to ensure that it respects and reflects USIP’s values and approach. The SPO is to ensure that all trainings during the 12-month project will enable local participants to develop skills, tools and action plans that contribute to reforming their own training systems.

The SPO provides overall support to the project by providing development and planning, financial management, and monitoring and evaluation as described in the following sections. The incumbent will also perform other duties as assigned.

This position requires familiarity with international contexts particularly those in transitional, democratizing countries and working with teams that are based in other countries and across multiple departments within an organization.


Program Development

  • As a Subject Matter Expert in pedagogy with experience in security sector training, the SPO serves as the project’s primary adviser on the curriculum design, review, delivery and assessment components of reforming Tunisia’s security sector training systems.
  • SMEs and advisors will be brought on to the project as consultants and will be working together as an International Advisory Group formed by USIP and supporting Tunisian security sector training reform. The SPO will work with the multiple experts to streamline their training reform and capacity building support and to ensure continuity and consistency across their activities for quality assurance.
  • Supports the Project Lead in helping Tunisian practitioners and the international advisors to develop ties that can outlive this project’s duration to achieve a truly committed International Advisory Group.
  • Engages in research and analysis as needed to strengthen USIP’s security sector training and education reform capacities. To this end the SPO will aim to apply lessons learned from the latest academic, field, and evaluative research, as well as field-based experience. This includes incorporating learning from USIP country teams or external actors on best practices for security sector training reform.
  • Coordinates with and serves as an extension of the Academy’s expertise in Tunisia, consulting with the Academy and using its guidance for the design of interactive trainings and workshops as well as supporting in the joint delivery of these activities.
  • Coordinates with the Director of Curriculum and Training Design and her team to develop trainings on adult learning principles and on curriculum review. This will involve exercises related to changing institutional habits and includes reviewing different courses to develop new tools and procedures for the project’s partner institutions.
  • Provides reports and summaries on project progress to and liaises regularly with Academy leadership, particularly the Director of Curriculum and Training Design.
  • Works with the USIP Global Campus to enable project beneficiaries’ access to Arabic language content and invite them to contribute to content through interviews.
  • Contributes to monitoring and evaluating the effectiveness of the program.

Public Outreach:

  • Builds strategic partnerships and cultivates contacts with subject matter experts and a wide variety of external organizations to leverage resources and combine efforts to promote USIP program initiatives and goals.
  • Provides regular briefings to governmental or other organizations on key subject matter area.

Financial Management:

  • Supports the Project Lead on managing the budget to ensure that the program is operating within its budget limitations in order to meet its goals and objectives.

 Performs other duties as assigned.


  • Masters or PhD in Education, Adult Education or International Relations
  • Experience designing and delivering security sector training
  • Experience in Security Sector Reform or Security Sector Training Reform strongly preferred. 
  • Experience working in or closely with a government department or international non-governmental organization strongly preferred, including engaging practitioners, policymakers and civil society members in fields related to security sector and security sector reform in transitional contexts.
  • Research, scholarship or experience related to teaching, pedagogy, communication preferred.
  • Must have previous experience working internationally and coordinating with team members across geographical divides.
  • The ability to communicate and train in either French or Arabic preferred.
  • Ability to write after-action reports and funding proposals.
  • Excellent writing and oral communication skills.
  • Excellent administrative skills are required as are strong qualities in working with teams.
  • Must have strong collaboration skills; must have the ability to coordinate the input and priorities of multiple players on a complex project.
  • Must have the ability to think strategically, and to effectively develop, communicate, and execute plans.
  • Must have strong problem-solving skills; must enjoy taking ownership of and solving problems.
  • Must have the ability to design and manage budgets. 
  • Variation in geographic expertise preferred.


  • Working hours: Full time (40 hours/week)
  • Location: Based in Tunis, Tunisia
  • Salary: Compensation is commensurate with qualifications and experience
  • Reporting line: NA Program Manager
  • Task Management: Project Lead (Project Officer)
  • Please note the hiring of this position is contingent on external funding.

All USIP contract and employee positions are contingent upon the favorable completion of a suitability background investigation.


To be considered for this position, please submit a complete application package by March 15, 2018 consisting of:

  1. Cover letter
  2. Resume

Only those applicants that are selected for further discussions will be contacted.

USIP is an equal opportunity employer. It is the policy and practice of USIP to offer equal employment opportunities to all qualified applicants and employees without regard to race, color, age, religion, national origin, sex, marital status, disability, veteran status, sexual orientation, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, political affiliations or belief, pregnancy, or any other characteristic protected by law.
Kindly apply through: 


Field Coordinator (Dakar, Senegal)

Location: Dakar, Senegal, Republic of

The JSD Program

Since 2015, USIP’s Justice and Security Dialogue (JSD) program in the Sahel-Maghreb has been piloting a model of collaborative local security in Burkina Faso, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal and Tunisia. The JSD approach seeks to improve relationships between civilian security services and the communities they serve, through a series of dialogues and related activities, which support participants in jointly identifying and addressing local security issues, through a transparent, iterative and participatory process.


The Field Coordinator, Justice and Security Dialogues (FC) will support the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) Justice and Security Dialogue Program in the Sahel and Maghreb by working with national partners to facilitate a series of dialogues and related activities in each country of responsibility. Together with local partners, the FC is responsible for ensuring that all program activities assigned to him/her are held in a manner that complies with project standards and objectives. The FC will oversee work in four to five countries of responsibility, and will be assisted by a Deputy Field Coordinator.

The position will be based in Dakar, Senegal, or Mali, Bamako, and require frequent travel to the relevant countries, and occasional travel to additional project countries and USIP headquarters. The FC will be supervised by the competent Washington D.C.-based Program Officer. He or she will supervise four to five JSD Country Officers (COs), one in each country of responsibility, and will act as an intermediary between HQ and the COs.

Major Duties and Responsibilities

  • Successfully complete all project activities in countries of responsibility in a timely      and effective manner: The field coordinator will ensure that all dialogue sessions as well as      related activities are completed in a manner that achieves project goals and complies with the principles of the JSD approach. This will include overseeing monitoring and evaluation for each country, as well as local partners’ financial reporting.
  • Build and maintain strong partnerships with local partners, key local and national government representatives, and relevant US Embassies and national and international organizations: The FC supported by the COs, will ensure that that the partner organization is making progress in the JSD process, while fostering honest and equal partnerships, and in building a regional network of contacts on behalf of USIP. The FC will supervise the COs in providing regular updates and analysis of current political and conflict dynamics in each program country, and in the Sahel region as required.
  • Coordinate 2-3 capacity building events per country with participants from local partners and dialogue participants from two or more project countries: Working closely with the partners and COs, the FC will identify gaps in partners’ and dialogue participants’ skills that have a negative impact on the JSD process. The FC will oversee trainings or other bilateral or multi-lateral activities in support of the project’s overall goals, and will coordinate all aspects of the event including identifying and hiring trainers, determining content, and event administration and logistics. In addition, the RPC will support participants from countries of responsibility to participate in regional activities.
  • Make substantial contributions to project design, research, and monitoring and evaluation tools: The FC will assist relevant DC staff in refining the JSD approach, project design and tools through field testing and gathering feedback. The FC will advise the DC-based team as to the relevant country context, and will assist with research for publications related to the countries of responsibility.
  • Perform other duties assigned.


  •  Bachelor’s degree required in relevant field (rule of law, conflict resolution, security sector reform, peace studies, etc.). Master’s degree preferred.
  • Five (5) years of relevant work experience in rule of law, security sector reform, conflict resolution, facilitation and dialogue, innovative peace programming or project management required.
  • Fluency in French and English required.
  • Based in or willing to relocate to Dakar, Senegal or Bamako, Mali, with the ability to travel freely between all project countries and Washington D.C.
  • Demonstrated interest in designing, testing and evaluating innovative programming.
  • Demonstrated knowledge of the cultural, socio-political and security context of the countries of responsibility. Proven track record of work and/or research experience and a strong professional network in the region.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently or within a team, to obtain results under pressure, and to simultaneously oversee many substantive and operational initiatives. 
  • Experience managing and supervising teams and supporting partner organizations by leading from behind.

Justice & Security Dialogue Project Officer | USIP

Location: Jos, Nigeria

The Project Officer, in consultation with the JSD Coordinator for Nigeria, is responsible for closely monitoring, supporting, and ensuring quality of implementation of the JSD process in Jos, Nigeria. This is a local position in Jos, Plateau state. The role requires supporting implementing partners in direct implementation, continuously developing relationships with institutional and local stakeholders; and implementing, monitoring and reporting on JSD project activities in Jos.

This position reports to the Coordinator, who is in charge of the overall strategic direction of JSD activities in country and partnership-building with relevant stakeholders, training, mentoring and coaching of in-country project officers, as needed. The position will also work in collaboration with D.C. based staff.

To access the full description of the Justice & Security Dialogue Project Officer job opening, kindly follow the link.


Program Officer - Governance, Law & Society | USIP

Location: Washington, United States of America
Application Contact: (recruitment@usip.org)

The Program Officer will be responsible for defining program objectives, ensuring that they are all implemented on schedule, overseeing reporting and financial management activities, as well as representing the JSD program vis-a-vis key international and domestic partners and stakeholders.

This position reports to USIP’s Director of Rule of Law, who exercises overall management of the Justice and Security Dialogue Program in the Sahel and Maghreb regions. The position will also work in close coordination with the JSD Program Officer responsible for rule of law, justice and security strategic advice.

For the full job description, kindly follow the link.


Programme Officer - Rule of Law

Location: Washington DC, United States of America

The Programme Officer will join the core team of the International Network to Promote the Rule of Law (INPROL) (www.inprol.org) at USIP. This position reports to the Senior Programme Officer who directs the INROL research network. The PO will act as a Rule of Law Facilitator for INPROL and lead for INPROL deliverables to support Rule of Law in Afghanistan.  INPROL is a global, online community of practice, which harnesses the collective knowledge and experience of its approximately 2,900 rule of law members, representing practitioners, policymakers and academics, to imagine and implement effective rule of law reforms in developing and conflict-affected societies. INPROL partners with the Department of State’s INL Afghanistan programme to support this broader mission as well as carry out specific deliverables to support rule of law promotion in Afghanistan. 

For the full job description, kindly follow the link


Program Officer

Location: Washington , United States of America
Application Contact: recruitment@usip.org ()

The United States Institute of Peace (USIP) is an independent, non-partisan, federally funded organization established and funded by the U.S. Congress to increase the nation’s capacity to manage international conflict without violence. 

It is looking for a Program Officer position that serves as the senior conflict resolution trainer in the Academy for International Conflict Management and Peacebuilding and is responsible for the design and delivery of conflict resolution trainings, the development of materials (simulations and cases) for online courses, and the creation of new partnerships leading to the creation of additional onsite courses and programs. In particular, the PO will help design and implement training content and courses that focus on the needs and competencies for practitioners working in conflict zones. This position will focus on training and instruction particularly related to conflict resolution and peacebuilding topics, including but not restricted to conflict prevention and preventing violent extremism, conflict management and transformation, advising, resilience, and facilitation and dialogue skills.



Toward a Rule of Law Culture

Exploring Effective Responses to Justice and Security Challenges


This guide is the product of a two-year partnership between USIP and the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau for Counterterrorism, during which USIP designed, developed and piloted a foundation rule of law course for the International Institute for Justice and the Rule of Law. The four 5-day pilot courses were delivered between November 2014 and July 2015 to mid- and senior-level legal, penal, police, judicial and civil society personnel from fifteen countries across Africa and the Middle East. The courses primarily focused on countries in transition; however, the core messages in this guide are applicable across all contexts, and the practical examples provided draw on lessons from six continents.

Access to the guide: Toward a Rule of Law Culture

Also available in French and Arabic



The Humanitarian Tinderbox

How Governments and NGOs Must Address the Global Aid Crisis

For the ones who missed the event on the Humanitarian Tinderbox held by the United Nations Institute of Peace, here is the webcast of the event. 

Europe’s refugee emergency has returned the world’s attention to a global crisis of historic proportions, fueled by prolonged conflict, weak or illegitimate governments and fragile societies. The number of people forced from their homes in the wake of violence, conflict or repression has soared from 35 million to 60 million worldwide in just a decade, pushing the capacity of humanitarian aid organizations to the brink. 

In this event, the panel has considered options for increasing and improving humanitarian aid to respond more effectively and efficiently to protracted crises. 


Police Corruption

Police corruption is a universal challenge in peacebuilding.  It wastes resources, undermines security and justice, slows economic development, and alienates citizens from their governments.  Some experts argue that efforts to curb police corruption are hopeless, or at best secondary.  Others maintain that attacking oppressive, unfair abuses is where reform efforts must start.  On November 16, 2011, USIP hosted a panel of distinguished experts who discussed the root causes of and potential remedies for police corruption.  This public event introduced a new USIP Special Report entitled “Police Corruption: What Past Scandals Teach about Current Challenges."

For more details about the event, kindly follow the link.


Iraq: Can Good Governance Erode Support for Militants?

United States Institute of Peace (USIP) hosted a discussion on January 6, 2016 highlighting new research by the global humanitarian and development organization Mercy Corps on the connection between citizens’ perceptions of governance and public support for armed opposition.Extremist groups like ISIS have seized control in swaths of Iraq and Syria in part because they tout themselves as an alternative to corrupt and inept government at all levels. 

Please kindly follow the link to have more information: Iraq: Can Good Governance Erode Support for Militants?


Tunisia’s Jasmine Revolution: On 5th Anniversary, What’s Next?

Five years ago, the Tunisian people’s protests calling for respect of their civil liberties resulted in the downfall of the 24-year authoritarian regime of President Zine El Abidine Ben Ali and the start of a rocky but largely peaceful process toward an inclusive political system. Watch the webcast of the event where the U.S. Institute of Peace and the International Republican Institute examine the issues facing the country in the coming year and how the international community can help.

To access the video please kindly follow the link: Tunisia’s Jasmine Revolution: On 5th Anniversary, What’s Next?


Policy and Research Papers

SR304 Security Sector Reform in Tunisia

The long-term success of Tunisia’s new democracy hinges on efforts to reform its security sector. Most in need of reform are the police, gendarme, and interior ministry.


About the Report

The U.S. Institute of Peace Security Sector Governance Center is engaged in a funded study of the prospects for security sector reform in North Africa. In January 2012, Querine Hanlon, Daniel Brumberg, and Robert Perito traveled to Tunisia, Libya, and Egypt. This report is the first in a series of country-focused reports on security sector reform in North Africa.

About the Author

Querine Hanlon is National Defense University Senior Fellow at the U.S. Institute of Peace (USIP). She is currently on sabbatical from her appointment as Dean of Academic Affairs at the College of International Security Affairs, National Defense University. The views expressed in this report are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Defense University or of USIP, which does not advocate specific policy positions.


Maritime Security Sector Reform

This report, commissioned by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) Center for Security Sector Governance, examines the need for comprehensive approaches to maritime security sector reform and shows why improving maritime governance matters to developing nations, the United States, and a wide range of economic and security partners. The report looks at growing security challenges in the maritime commons: piracy, illicit drug and human trafficking, and maritime support for terrorism and insurgency, including seaborne transport of weapons of mass destruction. In an increasingly complex and dynamic security environment, improving maritime governance will require collaborative approaches and coordinated efforts by governments, nongovernmental organizations, security forces, and commercial interests that depend on having safe, secure access to the maritime commons.

John Sandoz is a former U.S. Naval officer and current president of Adaptive Strategies Consulting, an LLC that supports thought leadership for strategy and policy planning.

For the full report go to:



Security Sector Transformation in the Arab Awakening

  • The Arab Awakening opened the door to democratic political change in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA). Security sector reform (SSR) is an integral component of the nascent democratic process in the region. While SSR is a long-term process, it should be a key part of institution building in the new democracies. Democracy requires security institutions that  are open, professional, and responsive to public needs.
  • The transitions to democracy are varied in nature and scope. SSR will differ by country and must be tailored to the political realities and specific circumstances of each state. The international community can foster successful SSR processes by calibrating its assistance according to the reform efforts in each country. A general or “one-size-fits-all” approach to SSR will not be successful.
  • A sense of political powerlessness, an unresponsive bureaucracy, a general lack of opportunity, economic stagnation (including high unemployment), and repressive security forces all contributed to the Arab Awakening. As a result of the upheaval, democratic forces in several of the MENA countries are pushing for transparency and accountability in the security services.
  • SSR must be undertaken in a holistic manner, couched within the framework of overall democratic reform and linked to other broad policies such as justice sector reform, evolution of the political process, and economic development. SSR will only be achieved if it is integrated and pursued in unison with these larger processes of democratic change. 
  • The international community, especially the United States and the European Union, need to foster democratic developments and, in particular, to support and coordinate SSR.

Follow this link to view the article.


The Interior Ministry's Role in Security Sector Reform

In international peace and stability operations, reform of the interior ministry and the police forces under its control is critical to success. This is also an essential element in reforming the wider security sector, which includes the defense ministry and military forces. Yet surprisingly little has been written on the subject, and efforts to reform the interior ministries in Iraq and Afghanistan were done only on an ad-hoc basis. This report explains the role of the interior ministry, the needed steps in ministerial reform, and the role of foreign advisers in this process. It then describes the consequences of the U.S. failure to reform the interior ministry in Iraq and recommends changes in infrastructure and staffing that would enable the United States to conduct better ministerial reform in future operations.

To view this publication, please follow this link.


Measuring Progress in Stabilization and Reconstruction

This report discusses ways to measure the success of stabilization and reconstruction efforts in failed states and war-torn societies objectively. The author stresses the need to establish clear and well-integrated goals that are based on an accurate baseline assessment of the conflict and are directly linked to strategic planning. The report provides a rudimentary framework for the development of a comprehensive metrics system for stabilization and reconstruction.

To view this article, please follow this link.


Survey Module

This module will guide you through the process of conducting surveys for your project.


Empowering local peacebuilders: Strategies for effective engagement of local actors in peace operations

This publication gives tried and true approaches to harness the capacity inherently present environment in the local environment. The collection of case studies offers an approach which is respectful and enables the trouble shooting and/or tweaking of existing procedures rather than starting over and implementing the “donor’s way” instead.

(Building Peace No.2, March 2012)


Mining for peace in Afghanistan

This article, released by USIP in 2012, situates strategic advising within the context of Afghanistan, and recounts a specific instance in which USIP representatives have partnered with local actors to strengthen governance and combat corruption in the currently transitioning state. 

The article is available through the following link: http://www.usip.org/publications/mining-peace-in-afghanistan 


The Treasury Approach to state-building and institution-strengthening assistance: Experience in Iraq and broader implications

Former U.S. Treasury Attaché to Baghdad, Iraq and USIP visiting research scholar Jeremiah S. Pam presents advantageous strategies as well as key challenges that arose out of his own experience as an advisor in post-war Iraq. While based in the specific case of Iraq, the implications of the report are highly relevant to many stabilisation situations, and especially salient to the needs and challenges of a strategic advisor. Appendices of the report present relevant policy recommendations for Kosovo, LIberia, Bosnia-Herzegovina, and Afghanistan. 


Preparing advisors for capacity-building missions

Preparing high-level advisors to support reform of post conflict states requires specific training in how to transfer knowledge in a complex, alien environment, how to operate without formal authority, and how to cultivate local ownership.

The article (Special Report no.312) is available through the following link: http://www.usip.org/publications/preparing-advisers-capacity-building-missions 


Linking Program Design and Evaluation in Peacebuilding: A Challenging Task

This report, “Linking Program Design and Program Evaluation: A Challenging Task,” captures the findings of a meta-review of program evaluation reports conducted by American University’s Center for Peacebuilding and Development and Search for Common Ground. The review looked at a variety of program design elements and evaluation methodologies from a selection of evaluation reports from the Portal to examine what range of practices are being implemented, in both design and evaluation, and to identify where there are areas for growth for peacebuilding program design, monitoring, and evaluation. 


Waiting for Change: The Impact of Transition on Local Justice and Security in Yemen

This report looks at the political transition and government reform in Yemen following the Arab Spring upheavals. It provides a snapshot of how the changing dynamics have affected local security and justice conditions in four politically and geographically diverse regions of Yemen.


Realism and Pragmatism in Security Sector Development

  • Security sector reform (SSR) policies and operational guidance have proved to be ineffective in prioritizing, sequencing, managing, and implementing donor-supported initiatives.
  • SSR policies and operational guidance do not reflect economic and political realities in donor countries. This disjunction requires greater selectivity in the choice of partner countries and the kind of pragmatic support provided.
  • A significant imbalance exists between supply and demand for justice and security development, as core segments of partner governments typically resists and will continue to resists key provisions of SSR.
  • Political will in partner countries is, like its companion concept, local ownership, highly fragmented, reflecting a natural competition between and among rationally self interested stakeholders.
  • Effective programming requires donors to direct their influence and support toward those constituencies (and their leadership) in whose self-interest is to implement SSR programs, despite the resistance to justice and security development by other stakeholders and competing political actors.
  • Donor-supported justice and security programs should be disaggragated and should concentrate on narrowly defines problems and issues, rather than seek to be holistic and comprehensive.

To access the article, follow this link.


The Role of the Ministerial Advisor in Security Sector Reform: Navigating Institutional Terrains

International actors in Security Sector Reform (SSR) are increasingly taking on roles as “advisors” to Ministries of Interior, Defense, and Justice. Rather than directly implement changes necessary for SSR, these advisors must persuasively articulate suggestions to their local counterparts. Advisors’ success depends on their ability to convey recommendations in a manner that makes change acceptable to their advisees. Ministerial and governmental advising is not the exclusive purview of any one entity. Rather, advising is undertaken by a diverse range of individuals from U.S. and foreign governments, militaries, NGOs, private contractors, and U.N. agencies. These actors have correspondingly diverse objectives and approaches to SSR; without coordination or consensus on SSR programming, advisors may find themselves working at cross-purposes. Furthermore, the multiplicity of advisors and institutions makes sharing best practices and improving over time and across conflicts extremely difficult.

What common challenges do foreign advisors face, and how might they pool intellectual resources and “lessons learned” to address these challenges?

To access the article, follow this link.


Afghanistan’s Civil Order Police: Victim of Its Own Success

  • In 2006, a day of deadly riot in Kabul dramatized the need for an Afghan constabulary force capable of controlling outbreaks of urban violence. In response, the U.S. military and Afghan authorities created a elite gendarmerie, the Afghanistan National Civil Order Police (ANCOP).
  • Although ANCOP was conceived of as a riot control force, it was assigned to the Focused District Development Program to replace district-level Afghan Uniformed Police who were away for training. The high demand and constant transfers required by this duty resulted in rates of attrition among ANCOP unit of 75 to 80 percent.
  • In 2010, ANCOP's superior training, firepower, and mobility were recognized in its assignments, along with a "surge" of U.S. military forces, to reverse the Taliban's hold on key areas in Southern Afghanistan.
  • In heavy fighting in Marja, Helmand province, ANCOP was demonstrably unprepared to serve as a counterinsurgency force, particularly in areas that had not been cleared by coalition and Afghan military forces.
  • Subsequent improvements in training and partnering with U.S. forces improved ANCOPS's performance in kandahar, where ANCOP was used to hold areas that had been cleared by the military.
  • By 2011, ANCOP had firmly established its place as an elite rapid reaction and counter-insurgency force with a positive reputation among coalition troops and afghan citizens.

Burundi at the Brink | Experts, USIP Research on How the World Can Help

Burundi is back at the brink. Less than a decade after the end of its civil war, a political conflict over the president’s attempt to stay in office for a disputed third term risks escalating into wider violence, policy specialists say. The international community has begun to respond, but should do more, and quickly. In this article, recent USIP research on how to prevent election violence identifies four strategies as being most effective. Peacebuilders can press the security sector to remain politically neutral, can continue monitoring and mapping by those organizations that remain on the ground, and can help the national election commission operate effectively. Additionally, diplomatic efforts to raise awareness about the impending crisis could bring more resources to the peace effort.


Crucial UN Peacekeeping Is Stretched to "Absolute Limits"

The alarming state of the overtaxed United Nations peacekeeping system endangers human rights, genocide prevention, development and the prospects for sustainable peace, USIP board Vice Chairman George Moose told an audience June 5 at the annual membership meeting of the United Nations Association of the National Capital Area. Read a transcript of his intervention here


New UN Goals Highlights Danger of "State Fragility" to Development

A new set of development goals that will be adopted by the world’s heads of state at the United Nations in September highlights the crucial problem of “fragile states” and the need to strengthen their governance, according to experts including current and former top diplomats and USIP President Nancy Lindborg.

The UN General Assembly plans to approve the new Sustainable Development Goals at its September session. The draft includes a call to build resilient states with “peaceful and inclusive societies, access to justice for all, and effective and capable institutions.” The Millennium Development Goals focused almost entirely on issues such as poverty, education and health. The change represents a profound shift among the world's biggest development agencies, said Lindborg. She described fragile states as countries where governance is generally “weak and ineffective, and also illegitimate in the eyes of its citizens.”

Find more about the question here.


Q&A: Security and Democracy in Tunisia after Latest Attack

A Tunisian gunman recently massacred 38 people at the major resort of Sousse. It was the second mass attack this year, after the March 18 assault on the well-known Bardo Museum in the capital Tunis that killed 22 people, most of them tourists. U.S. Institute of Peace Special Advisor Daniel Brumberg explores the ramifications for Tunisia and the region, as the country shows determination to pursue a democratic transition.

Read the Q&A here.


Reconciliation in Practice

Reconciliation projects face two critical challenges: the situation on the ground in postconflict settings and the gap between reconciliation theory and practice. If the society is to transition successfully to a new path forward, the critical knowledge gap must first be closed. The first step is assessing work recently completed or now in progress. How do organisations even define reconciliation ? What activities are being undertaken to that end? What theories underpin intervention strategies? How do organisations measure success? Published by the United States Institute of Peace, this report answers these questions and points the way forward.


Realism and Pragmatism in Security Sector Development

This report reflects views expressed during a conference held at the United States Institute of Peace on June 29–30, 2010, titled “International Policy on Security Sector Governance: opportunities and Gaps.” The conference sought to promote the security sector reform work of U.S. agencies by examining international and U.S. policy and practices to identify gaps, best practices, and comparative advantages in conducting reform. The conferees considered how the U.S. government and other stakeholders could benefit from the integration of new ideas into emerging justice and security development reform policy.

Read Realism and Pragmatism in Security Sector Development


Local Ownership of Security Sector Reform

  • Security sector reform (SSR) is a highly complex and political process involving a range of international and local actors. There is a growing policy consensus that sustainability is a critical component of success for SSR programs, and that early local ownership is a critical component of sustainability.
  • Practitioners face several obstacles to achieving local ownership, particularly in conflict affected countries like Iraq and Afghanistan. To overcome these obstacles and effectively promote local ownership, international actors must answer three important questions:
  • First, what are we trying to achieve? Despite the apparent consensus on the importance of local ownership, the definition of local ownership is still debated.
  • Second, which locals should take ownership of SSR? It is often difficult for international donors to select partners, since local actors often have competing visions and priorities.
  • Finally, how do we measure success? In evaluating SSR programs, should international or local values and priorities be used to judge the success of SSR programs?

Access Local Ownership of Security Sector Reform on USIP's site.


The State of the Field: Gender and Peacebuilding

Scholars, peacebuilders and governments increasingly understand that gender is critical to analyzing violent conflicts and transforming them into sustainable peace. The public focus on gender issues in peacebuilding has been growing since 2000, when the U.N. Security Council adopted Resolution 1325. The measure urged countries to craft national action plans to protect women and girls during conflict and ensure women have a greater voice in decision-making on security issues.

Access to: The State of the Field: Gender and Peacebuilding 


Rearming CAR’s Forces: A Way out of the Abyss?

Following rising sectarian violence in the Central African Republic, local and international actors are calling for the rearmament of the country’s armed forces. Attempts to demobilize militias have largely failed and the country’s institutions remain weak, but rearming the armed forces without transforming the ethnic balance of its troops could lead to ex-Seleka factions to act in opposition.

Link to Rearming CAR's Forces: A Way out of the Abyss? 


The Basque Conflict and ETA: The Difficulties of an Ending

Violence at the hands of the Basque separatist organization ETA was for many years an anomalous feature of Spain’s transition to democracy. This report, which draws on the author’s book Endgame for ETA: Elusive Peace in the Basque Country  (Hurst and Oxford University Press, 2014), explains why this was the case, examines both the factors that contributed to ETA’s October 2011 announcement of an end to violence and the obstacles encountered in moving forward from that announcement to disarmament and dissolution, and extracts lessons relevant for other contexts.

The Basque Conflict and ETA: The Difficulties of an Ending


Regional Security through Inclusive Reform in the Maghreb and the Sahel

This new Peace Brief analyzes the challenges of security reform in the region and highlights how community-security partnerships offer one innovative approach to address this key issue. 

Throughout the Maghreb and the Sahel, governments are struggling to manage a security environment fundamentally transformed by the Arab Spring. Within this region, the efforts of governments to secure their territories and civil society organizations to create accountable and transparent security institutions have proceeded almost wholly divorced from each other. This Peace Brief shares key insights from the engagement between official and civil society actors both within and across borders to address these gaps, makes the case for working regionally to address the twin challenges of security and reform, and highlights how community-security partnerships offer one approach to advancing the region’s security and reform agenda.

Full report: Regional Security through Inclusive Reform in the Maghreb and the Sahel


Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces


In the past fourteen years, the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) have developed into a collection of professional institutions that are both committed to their mission and highly respected. However, they still face major challenges in key areas of capacity, such as logistics, air power, and intelligence. This report, published by the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), assesses the ANDSF’s structure and capabilities and the conditions needed for their long-term financial and operational sustainability.

To access the full Afghanistan National Defense and Security Forces, kindly follow the link.


State Strengthening in Afghanistan


Since 2001, Afghanistan’s political and social landscape has changed dramatically. However, international state-strengthening interventions have arguably had mixed results. Unprecedented aid and assistance has helped the country transition to a nascent democracy, attain a greater level of security, rebuild some of its infrastructure, and open more space for civil society participation. 

But, the diverse approaches taken by multiple actors with varying objectives have sometimes had negative consequences. Moreover, due to competing internal and external motivations and the current trends of declining aid and increasing conflict, the progress achieved may not be sustainable or have a long-term impact. This report by the United States Institute of Peace provides lessons learned in state strengthening from 2001–14, as well as recommendations for current and future interventions.

For full access to State Strengthening in Afghanistan, kindly follow the link.


Policing Libya: Form And Function Of Policing Since The 2011 Revolution

USIP Libya Ssector

This United States Institute of Peace (USIP) report by Peter Cole and Fiona Mangan examines the different directions that policing in Libya has taken since the fall of Gadhafi in 2011. Using two cities, Tobruk and Sabha, as representative case studies, the report examines how competing and overlapping groups have assumed policing functions and traces the social and political inclinations of those groups. Acknowledging that local variation prevents countrywide generalization, the report identifies features and tendencies of the Libyan landscape that are relevant to future reform. 

To access the USIP report Policing Libya: Form And Function Of Policing Since The 2011 Revolution, kindly follow the link.


Prisons and Detention in Libya


This report from the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) examines the prison system in Libya. With the permission of the Libyan Ministry of Justice and Judicial Police, USIP research teams conducted two assessments of the Libyan prison system, visiting detention facilities throughout the country in 2012 and again in 2015–16 to evaluate organizational function, security, infrastructure, and prisoner well-being. This report combines and compares the findings of the two assessments, discussing the broader context of detention issues in Libya, with analysis centering on prisons under the authority of the Ministry of Justice and operated by the Judicial Police. The 2012 assessment team consisted of Fiona Mangan, a USIP senior program officer, and Dr. Mark Shaw, an expert consultant. The 2015–16 assessment team consisted of Rebecca Murray, a researcher and journalist; Rami Musa, a journalist; and Fiona Mangan. Mohamed Abouharous provided invaluable translation and logistical support during both visits. The assessments, part of a multiyear portfolio of rule of law programming and analysis conducted after the 2011 revolution, were supported by the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Bureau of the U.S. Department of State.

To access the Prisons and Detention in Libya report, kindly follow the link.


Building Regional Border Security Cooperation: Lessons from the Maghreb


This Peace Brief outlines lessons learned by the United States Institute of Peace during a series of workshops held in the spring of 2016 with border officials from Morocco, Algeria, and Tunisia. The workshops applied an operations-driven approach to the development of a joint strategic vision for regional border security cooperation that is grounded in human security and rule of law principles.

The outcomes from the workshops provide important lessons for developing a plan for border security cooperation in other regions, which in turn can provide critical support to peacebuilding efforts where borders are used opportunistically by terrorists, militants, and criminals to evade law enforcement and create tension between neighboring states.

To read the full report please click here Building Regional Border Security Cooperation: Lessons from the Maghreb


Preparing for Complex Conflicts

complex conflicts

The Fragility Study Group is an independent, non-partisan, effort of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace, the Center for a New American Security and the United States Institute of Peace. This brief is part of a series authored by scholars from the three institutions that build on the chair report to discuss the implications of fragility on existing U.S. tools, strategic interests and challenges.

To access the brief Preparing for Complex Conflicts kindly follow the link.


Fragility and Security Sector Reform


This brief is part of a series that discuss the implications of fragility on existing U.S. tools, strategic interests and challenges. U.S. efforts to improve police and military capacity accelerated after 9/11, when the United States began to see weak, fragile, or failed states as reservoirs of insecurity and committed to helping strengthen their ability to fight internal threats before they crossed borders. Meanwhile, as part of a lighter-footprint approach to global engagement, building the capacity of partner states – many of them fragile – became a way for the United States to address the growing number of crises without directly committing troops.

Since only 1 in 5 violent deaths worldwide is now caused by civil or interstate war, SSA encompasses law enforcement support in addition to military support. Although impossible to render an accurate account of the scale of America’s SSA, it is clear that the United States is increasingly relying on this tool, spending an estimated $18.5 billion on SSA in 2014. The author argues  that  there is no correlation between increased SSA and stability in fragile states and improving SSA effectiveness requires changes to both strategy and implementation.

For full access to Fragility and Security Sector Reform, kindly follow the link.


Afghan Women and Violent Extremism

In Afghanistan, the actions and narratives of violent extremist groups threaten to roll back many of the gains and hard-won rights of women over the last fifteen years. Women have long been cast in a binary light—as either disempowered victims or deviant anomalies—but in fact are involved in a wide range of activities, from peacebuilding to recruiting, sympathizing, perpetrating, and preventing violent extremism. Drawing on more than one hundred interviews in the field in Afghanistan, this report delves into the roles women play in the context of violent extremism. A deeper understanding of these roles and the reasons behind them, the report asserts, is critical to effective policy and programming.

For full access to the blog and original research article Afghan Women and Violent Extremism, kindly follow the link. 


Tribe, Security, Justice and Peace in Libya Today


This report from the United States Institute of Peace (USIP) examines the renewed role of tribes as guarantors of social stability and providers of security and justice services in Libya since the 2011 revolution. Supported by the International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Bureau of the U.S. Department of State, the study is part of a portfolio of rule of law work carried out by the USIP in Libya. Report findings are based on qualitative field research and a nationally representative survey carried out by USIP in partnership with Altai Consulting. A companion report discusses how political currents in Libya since 2011 have shaped policing and security actors on the ground.

To access the Tribe, Security, Justice and Peace in Libya Today report, kindly follow the link.


Inclusive Approaches to Community Policing and CVE

What happens when community policing—a strategy that promotes collaboration between the police and a community to ensure safety and security—is implemented in transitional societies, in marginalized communities, or to prevent violent extremism or to engage women in providing community-level security? To ensure that they are not doing more harm than good, security, gender, and peacebuilding practitioners must both expand their understanding of policing methodologies and related assumptions and reconcile sometimes competing objectives.

For full access to the report Inclusive Approaches to Community Policing and CVE, kindly follow the link.


Preventing Election Violence in Liberia

Liberia will hold presidential and legislative elections on October 10. The run-up to the vote has been primarily peaceful, and the country has engaged in ongoing efforts to prevent election violence. This Peace Brief, based on USIP research, assesses the risk of election violence and the scope of violence prevention efforts, and provides recommendations for ongoing prevention. 

For full access to Preventing Election Violence in Liberia, kindly follow the link. 


Does Reconciliation Prevent Future Atrocities? Evaluating Practice in Sri Lanka

This report focuses on reconciliation practice in Sri Lanka, a country representative of related successes and challenges, to assess its impact on preventing mass atrocity and the logic of prevention through reconciliation. Using a mixed-methods approach that includes a field experiment, interviews, and analysis of secondary data sources, the report is a follow-up to a 2015 Peaceworks, “Reconciliation in Practice,” spearheaded by the Center for Applied Research on Conflict at the United States Institute of Peace (USIP). Data collection for this report was supported by the Social Scientists’ Association, a Sri Lankan–based NGO.

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Reframing the Crisis in Myanmar’s Rakhine State

This paper focuses on the two competing narratives that have emerged in the aftermath of the attacks in Myanmar’s Rakhine State. One frames the attacks as a critical threat to national security and the majority cultural-religious status quo. The second focuses on the human cost of the clearance operations, particularly for the largely stateless Rohingya. In any interpretation, it is clear that the situation is a threat to regional stability moving forward, necessitating a coordinated political and humanitarian response.

For full access to the paper, Reframing the Crisis in Myanmar’s Rakhine State, kindly follow the link. 


The Role of Media in Shaping Libya's Security Sector Narratives

During and after Libya’s revolution, national media outlets became known and popular for their balanced reporting. The situation in the few years since has changed, however. The security landscape in Libya today is a confusing array of institutional and non-institutional actors each asserting legitimacy. The country is on the brink of full-scale civil war. Its media has become both polarized and a key tool for many security actors. This report looks at three primary television channels to offer insights into the media’s role in shaping public perceptions and building political constituencies.

Executive summary:

  • The Libyan security landscape is broadly divided into two camps: revolutionary-Islamist and institutionalist-conservative. The country’s resurgent media sector is split along similar lines. This polarization and related partistan reporting reinforce polarization among security sector actors and the public and could further undermine established peace in Libya.
  • Media narratives dominating Libya’s security sector revolve around three axes: whether actors are legal or illegal, whether they supported or opposed the 2011 revolution, and whether they are correct or deviant Muslims. Security actors use these narratives to build their legitimacy.
  • Of the three channels monitored, Libya Al Ahrar was the most balanced but displayed a cautiously anti-Islamist, institutionalist agenda. Al Nabaa was mainstream Islamist and a staunch supporter of revolutionary units, such as the Libyan Shield Force. Libya Awalan was strongly anti-Islamist, conservative, and a vocal supporter of Haftar’s actions in Benghazi.
  • Libyans have little trust in any of the main regional and Libyan national television channels, including the national broadcaster, Libya Al Wataniyah, which fares no better than the private channels.
  • Channels with clear anti-Islamist credentials were more trusted than their pro-Islamist counterparts, reflecting the general anti-Islamist sentiment among Libyans today.
  • Channels advance their opinion on the legality of security actors, have thus contributed to related consumer perceptions about those actors, and in turn play an important role in how the security situation in Libya continues to unfold.

For full access to The Role of Media in Shaping Libya's Security Sector Narratives, kindly follow the link.  


Defusing Violent Extremism in Fragile States

In Nigeria, a radio call-in show with local Islamic scholars provided an alternative to extremist propaganda. In Somalia, training youth in nonviolent advocacy for better governance produced a sharp drop in support for political violence. In the Lake Chad region, coordinating U.S. defense, development and diplomatic efforts helped push back Boko Haram and strengthened surrounding states. Such cases illustrate ways to close off the openings for extremism in fragile states, experts said in a discussion at the U.S. Institute of Peace. 

For full access to the article, Defusing Violent Extremism in Fragile States, please follow the link.


Electing Peace in Liberia

The day after Christmas Liberians went to the polling stations to elect George Weah, a former international soccer player, as the new President of Liberia. Weah beat the former vice president and chief opponent, Joseph Boakai, in a run-off election. 

This article aims at recognizing Liberians and their primary role in keeping the peace, in particular the National Election Commission (NEC). This feat being even more notable as the possibility of election-related violence was substantial given the overwhelming development challenges in Liberia and its history of armed conflict.

For full access to the article, Electing Peace in Liberia , please follow the link. 


Other Documents

Women and Peace: A Special Role in Violent Conflict

In this contribution from the United States Institute of Peace (USIP), Fred Strasser highlights women's contributions to peace discussed in a recent discussion by experts at USIP. In Liberia, women, excluded from talks to end the country’s civil war, besieged negotiators until they signed a deal. In Guatemala, where insurgents and the government each had a female delegate in talks, pressure from women put indigenous, gender and labor rights into an accord. In Northern Ireland, women placed the needs of victims and political prisoners on the agenda after winning a role in peace negotiations. In this contribution, the author explores more specifically the role of women in the Colombian peace process, and brings in different studies on their positive impact.

To access this contribution on Women and Peace and their special role in violent conflict, kindly follow the link.

Other Document

The Current Situation in Libya | USIP Fact Sheet


The United States Institute for Peace (USIP) published a fact sheet on the current situation in Libya. Addressing topics ranging from prison assessment and reform to the role of the media in shaping the security sector narrative, USIP's recent work in Libya is presented along with a number of publications (in-depth reports and policy briefs).

To access the USIP Fact Sheet on the Current Situation in Libya, kindly follow the link.

Other Document

Understanding the Informal Security Sector in Nigeria

spec report

This report from Ernest Ogbozor of the United States Institute of Peace provides an analysis of the informal security actors in the Nigerian states of Plateau, Kaduna, and Kano and in the capital city of Abuja. The key issues considered are the types of informal security actors, the structures of these actors, their recruitment and training mechanisms, their accountability issues, their relationships with formal security actors, and perceptions of them. Interviews were conducted with sixty informal security actors and stakeholders in January and February 2015.

The report contributes to a more nuanced understanding of the informal security structures in Nigeria.

To access the Understanding the Informal Security Sector in Nigeria, kindly follow the link.

Other Document

Identity, Gender, and Conflict Drivers in Pakistan

Based on a study conducted in the Pakistani town of Haripur that investigated children’s attitudes toward identity, this Peace Brief finds that identity-based divides are in fact not the primary drivers of conflict at the community level, but notes the continuing salience of gender identity, which produces differing social expectations and differing understandings of conflict resolution roles.

To access the entire brief Identity, Gender, and Conflict Drivers in Pakistan, kindly click on the link.

Other Document